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The best part about Paul is that, like any good cult leader, he includes the rhetoric to dismiss anyone out of hand that isn't compelled by his own words:

2 Thessalonians 3:14 And if any man obey not our word by this epistle, note that man, and have no company with him, that he may be ashamed

Which describes much of 2 Thessalonians 3, his authority 3, his authority s assumed by the declarative of how he behaves.  Yet, the appeal is purely insular in that the in group can always make that claim and like any good biblical tautology.. it can be used to reinforce anyone's declarative authority.  Of course, the audience has to believe for it to mean anything, and if they don't they are damned.. not worthy of keeping company with.
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rickymooston Nice point. September 09, 2012, 12:45:06 PM